‘The Voice’: Jordan Smith Steals The Show On Season 9 Premiere With Sia’s “Chandelier”

Caila Ball-Dionne | September 22, 2015 6:11 am

If there was any doubt as to which female coach Pharrell Williams, Blake Shelton and Adam Levine prefer, the season 9 premiere of The Voice leaves, well, no doubt. The boys welcome Gwen Stefani back with balloons, flowers and a customized T-shirt, and mention throughout the episode how happy they are to have her back.

Remember that same reception last season for Christina Aguilera? Yeah, me neither.

Fresh off of receiving its second Emmy award on Sunday, The Voice premiered with a four-coach super group performance. Donning a sparkling crop top that reflects the ray of light she is to this show, Gwen Stefani sings Blake Shelton’s “Neon Light,” before Blake Shelton cuts in to sing No Doubt’s “Don’t Speak.” Pharrell makes his grand entrance to sing Maroon 5’s “Sugar,” followed by Adam Levine singing Pharrell and Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky.”

But back to what the show is really about: Gwen’s premiere night outfit. The red sequined one-sleever and the red pleather pants might be too much for some people, but not for Gwen. You just keep living your best life, girl.

Now back to what The Voice says the show is really about: the contestants. A few of those hit the stage too. Here’s who made it through:

Mark Hood, 24 – Illinois

A ball full of energy that calls himself Mark Hood is the first performer of the season. Mark sings “Use Me” by Bill Withers and fits in loads of runs, yet demonstrates great control. Mark has the lot to choose from, as all four turn around.

“I love your infections energy,” says Adam. “You high-fived the stage.”

“I have a lot of experience with all kids of music and I think we could have a lot of fun together,” says Gwen, who hopes his energetic presence inspires her as she creates her newest album.

“Those runs with those incredible jazz notes; those runs were crazy,” marvels Pharrell.

“You were dancing around like a freak of nature,” says Blake. “You’re such a good singer with so much control that you made that work.”

Despite going into it with Blake Shelton in mind, Mark decides to join Season 8 champ Pharrell.

Kota Wade, 23 – California

Some parents tell their kids to settle down and get a “real job” when they want to be rock stars. Hollywood rocker Kota Wade’s parents, on the other hand, took the approach of starting their own recording studio. Their parental support pays off when Gwen, Blake and Pharrell turn around for her soulful performance of Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Home To Me.”

“I could see you in a band with me,” says Gwen. “I know what to do with you.”

“You’re doing it your way, which is super cool,” says Pharrell.

“You’re like a modern day Cyndi Lauper,” says Blake.

Calling the female coach her “fashion inspiration,” Kota joins team Gwen.

Keith Semple, 33 – Illinois

Up next is a rocking dad who specializes in dad rock. Keith Semple, who is originally from Northern Ireland, has opened up for the likes of Bon Jovi and Kid Rock in his band , Semple. Fittingly, he sings Bon Jovi’s “I’ll Be There For You.” Both Adam and Gwen turn around, Adam after a fit of singing along in his chair.

“I just love that you’re doing something that reminds me of back in the day,” says Adam. “I think you have a very powerful voice.”

“You have so much dynamics in your voice,” says Gwen. “I think we could do some fun stuff together.”

Dad rockers love Maroon 5! Keith moves forward on Team Adam.

Siahna Im, 15 – Washington

Fifteen-year-old Siahna Im is still in braces, looks like a delicate flower and sounds even younger than her teen years. When she hits the stage, though, her soulful voice transcends. Siahna sings Peggy Lee’s “Fever” with a beautiful tone and a sprinkling of jazz notes. It’s a mystery why Adam does not turn around for this unique talent, but Gwen, Blake and Pharrell all have the right idea.

“The first moment I heard your voice, I was like, ‘that’s my girl,’” says Gwen. “It’s a whole journey that I’ve been on and that I can share with you.”

“I’m going to do everything I can to make you the star you deserve to be,” says Blake.

“There is no doubt that you are talented, there is no doubt that we all want you on our teams and there is no doubt that you’re something special,” says Pharrell. No word as to what Jedi psychology he’s employing by repeating “No Doubt” three times when trying to win a contestant from Gwen Stefani.

His Jedi mind tricks worked, as Siahna joins team Pharrell.

Jordan Smith – Kentucky

The Voice producers really flex their newest Emmy with a “coaches experience” view of a Blind Audition. Yes, how very interesting it is to watch the coach’s react to Jordan Smith performing Sia’s “Chandelier” instead of watching the actual four-chair turn performance. Well done.

Regardless, Jordan absolutely crushes the challenging song with control and power. The coaches are shocked that such a high voice belongs to a man, and clamor for Jordan as a team member.

“You do not look like your voice, FYI,” says Gwen. “You just moved me so much today.”

“Your singing voice, it’s unbelievable,” says Blake. “I think I’m the best coach for you.”

“I think you’re the most important person that’s ever been on this show,” says Adam, rocking the boldest superlative of the night.

“That which makes you different is what makes you special,” says Pharrell. “I would love to have you on my team.”

Superlatives win out on this one, and Jordan moves to Team Adam.

Nadjah Nichole, 23 – Delaware

Between her soaring voice and her stylish look, single mother Nadjah Nicole oozes pop star potential. She breaks out her vocal chops to perform Janelle Monáe’s “Tightrope,” and her crazy high notes toward the end earn turns from Adam and Blake.

“I was blown away,” says Adam.

“I don’t know who the hell ‘Janelle” is, but I turned around for Nadjah. I didn’t turn around for Janelle,” says Blake, demonstrating his always impressive knowledge of music.

Then again, who needs to be up on current music to be a coach on a singing competition? Contrary to all logic, Nadjah picks Blake.

Braiden Sunshine, 15 – Connecticut

It’s a real nail-biter when 15-year-old Braiden Sunshine (actual name) has his Blind Audition. The youngster sings Blues Traveler’s “The Mountains Win Again,” just staring at the back of the coach’s chairs until the very last moment. Finally, Pharrell and Gwen turn around.

“You’re so amazing,” says Gwen. “If you choose me, you’re going to make my day, like, majorly.”

“You’re a special person,” says Pharrell. There will never be another voice like yours.”

Braiden can’t turn down red sequins! The young singer joins Team Gwen.

Barrett Baber, 35 – Arkansas

Closing out the night is drama teacher Barrett Baber. Barrett has overcome tragedy in his life, namely when his college choir was in a plane crash. Though Barrett came out of the deadly 1999 accident physically unscathed, he wants to show people experiencing tragedy in their lives that they can overcome it. Barrett sings Jeff Healey Band’s “Angel Eyes,” and his country-meets-soul performance earns spins from all four coaches.

“I can tell by your vocals that you love all styles, and that’s why you’re one of my favorites,” says Adam. “I will destroy for you.”

“Bluegrass, folk music, that’s what I grew up on,” says Gwen. “I know that I’m just a girl [Editor’s note: sigh], but I think you’re incredible.”

“I just heard so much soul,” says Pharrell. “Whatever this is, it deserves four chairs to turn around.”

“I feel like I’m watching Garth Brooks in concert right now,” says Blake, who boils Barrett’s versatility down to what he really cares about. “The word I’m interested in is country. That’s what I do with my life,”

No surprises here, Barrett choses Blake.

The Blind Auditions continue tonight, with plenty more superlatives and coach banter in store.